At eleven this morning, 15,000 members and friends of the Grand Orange Lodges marched through Edinburgh, Scotland. The move was out of season – July is the peak month for Orange marches, which have been controversial in recent decades for taking routes through Catholic neighborhoods, and turning violent. In an unusual but not unanticipated move, the Orangemen organized a march in protest of the Scottish independence referendum, which will take place next Thursday, 18 Sept. This march was peaceable, but the tension was palpable. Mainstream activists and politicians on both sides of the debate stayed far away from this one. No contingent from the unionist Better Together group showed up, and there wasn’t a republican in sight – unless Alex Salmond was sneaking around in disguise.
Check out these pictures for now, and expect a story later tonight.